8 Month Old Sleep Schedule + Wake Windows & Nap Schedule

There are so many benefits to having the perfect 8 month old sleep schedule. You can plan your days ahead of time, know when to schedule appointments and play dates, and feel totally at ease having someone else care for your little one. 

 

It’s so much easier to say:

“first nap at 10, serve lunch at 12, and down for second nap at 2:30”

 

It is not ideal to say:

“she woke up at 7 so first nap should be around 10 but watch for sleep cues! And try and eat around 12, but if she seems super tired then do lunch earlier because she can only do a 3 hour wake window. But also watch for sleepy cues because sometimes it’s a 2.5 hour wake window and if you leave it too late she will be overtired and won’t go to sleep. So you will have to do a contact nap, but if you try too early she won’t fall asleep either and then you have to get her up and try again in 30-60 minutes. But don’t wait too long or she will be overtired so you know what, never mind, I’ll just cancel my colonoscopy.”

 

By 8 months we have all learned that when your baby is overtired it results in less than ideal nighttime sleep (fighting bedtime, more night wakings, and/or early morning wakings) and shorter naps. And no parent wants to be in this cycle. 

 

The biggest barrier to finding the perfect 8 month old sleep schedule is that every baby is different, which means that there isn’t one single 8 month old sleep schedule that is going to be perfect for every 8 month old. 

 

This is why I am such a huge advocate for being empowered with knowledge and confidence to know exactly what YOUR baby needs to get great sleep. 

 

8 month old baby sleeping in a crib | The Peaceful Sleeper

What to expect in this post:

In this post I will go over how much sleep (on average) 8 month old babies need, what to expect during this month, how to improve your baby’s sleep, and several different 8 month old sleep schedules to be tweaked so you can create the perfect schedule for YOUR 8 month old baby. 

 

How much should an 8 month old sleep? 

 

What to expect for my 8 month old’s sleep? 

 

What should an 8 month old’s sleep schedule be? 

 

How can I improve my 8 month old’s sleep schedule?

 

 

How long should an 8 month old sleep? 

 

If you haven’t already, download my FREE Ultimate Naps Guide. It’ll give you all the knowledge you need to help your baby (or toddler) take great naps! Download for free here 💤

Figuring out how much sleep an 8 month old needs can be tricky because it’s right around the time that babies are between 3 and 2 naps. Around 7-9 months, babies drop their last nap of the day (which is usually an evening cat nap). Figuring out when the best time for your little one to transition to 2 naps can be difficult, so I have more on dropping the nap in the “what to expect from my 8 month old’s sleep” section.  

 

Regardless of whether your baby is taking 2 naps or 3, 8 month old’s naps are ideally 60-120 minutes (and if there is a third nap, it is usually a 30-40 minute cat nap). This adds up to 3-4.5 hours of daytime sleep. 

 

At night, 8 month old babies usually sleep 11-12 hours. This is of course broken for any night feedings your little one still has (more on this in the “what to expect for my 8 month old’s sleep” section). 

 

As always, it’s important to remember that every baby is different and these are just sleep averages. Some babies are higher sleep needs, and some are lower sleep needs. The goal is to tune into your baby and have the knowledge and confidence to know how much sleep your little one needs. 

 

The chart below consists of sleep averages for 8 month old babies, so it can be very helpful to use as a reference point and then tweak as needed. 

 

Age Number of naps per day Ideal length of naps Awake time between naps Awake time before bed Average amount of daytime sleep  Average amount of nighttime sleep Average amount of TOTAL sleep 
8 months 2-3 60-120 min 2-3 hours 3-4 hours 3-4.5 hours 11-12 hours * 14-16 hours

 

 

What to expect for my 8 month old’s sleep? 

 

As stated above, most babies transition from 3 naps to 2 naps around 7-9 months. That late afternoon cat nap disappears and the wake windows for the day expand, which results in the second nap of the day shifting later. It’s usually best if the first wake window of the day stays around 2 hours, and the second wake window can be longer. 

 

You know it’s time to make the transition when the second or third nap of the day becomes a fight, or bedtime starts to become later, or all sleep falls apart. For everything you need to know about when and how to transition to 2 naps head here.

 

8 month old baby before a nap | The Peaceful Sleeper

 

Many parents also wonder if their 8 month old should be sleeping through the night by now. While some babies are sleeping through the night, others are not. And there are a few reasons why this may be. 

 

If you haven’t already, download my FREE Ultimate Naps Guide. It’ll give you all the knowledge you need to help your baby (or toddler) take great naps! Download for free here 💤

 

Babies wake in the night for a few reasons: 

  • Hunger
  • Habit 
  • Inability to self soothe
  • Overtiredness

 

 

Hunger: 

It is very typical for 8 month old babies to have one feeding in the night. It is not until 9-12 months that most babies drop this last feeding. 

 

 

Habit: 

If your 8 month old is waking more than once in the night for a feeding, then it is likely out of habit. If your pediatrician is on board, you can work on dropping the unnecessary night wakings one at a time. I walk you through this process in my 4-24 month course as well as my “cutting down on night wakings” guide which is in my 4-24 month guide pack

 

 

Inability to self soothe: 

If you have not taught your baby independent sleep skills yet, then this is the first place to start. Most of the time, when babies have independent sleep skills, unnecessary night wakings (those that don’t require a feeding) drop on their own. My 4-24 month sleep learning course teaches you different approaches and how to tailor each approach to your baby. Or you can hop on the phone with one of our amazing sleep consultants and they will work with you to create an individualized sleep plan. 

 

 

Overtiredness: 

When babies are overtired, then they often wake more in the night. This comes back to making sure your 8 month old is on a great sleep schedule that works for them! Keep reading! 

 

 

What should an 8 month old’s sleep schedule be, including wake windows?

 

Finding the perfect sleep schedule is about finding the perfect sleep schedule for YOUR baby. As mentioned above, some babies have high sleep needs (meaning they require more sleep than the average baby) and other babies have lower sleep needs (meaning they require less sleep than the average baby). This is one of the reasons why there isn’t a one-size-fits-all 8 month old sleep schedule. 

 

Below I have created a variety of different 8 month old sleep schedules with the goal being that you find one that is closest to your baby’s optimal sleep and slightly tweak it to make it the perfect 8 month old sleep schedule for YOUR baby. 

If you haven’t already, download my FREE Ultimate Naps Guide. It’ll give you all the knowledge you need to help your baby (or toddler) take great naps! Download for free here 💤

 

8 month old on a solid 2 nap schedule: 

Time  Length of Nap
Wake Up 7:00am 
1st Nap 9:00am-10:30am 90 min 
2nd Nap 2:00pm – 3:30pm  90 min 
Bedtime  7:00pm 

Total sleep: 15 hours 

 

8 month old on a solid 2 nap schedule: 

Time  Length of Nap
Wake Up 6:30am 
1st Nap 9:00am-11:00am 120 min 
2nd Nap 2:30pm – 4:00pm  90 min 
Bedtime  7:30pm 

Total sleep: 14.5 hours 

 

8 month old schedule for 2 solid naps and a cat nap: 

Time  Length of Nap
Wake Up 6:30 am 
1st Nap 8:30am – 10:00 am 90 min
2nd Nap 12:12-1:15 pm  60 min
Cat Nap  3:15-3:45 pm 30 min 
Bedtime  7:30 pm

Total sleep: 14 hours 

 

 

8 month old schedule for low sleep needs baby: 

Time  Length of Nap
Wake Up 6:30 am 
1st Nap 9:00am-10:00am 60 min 
2nd Nap 1:00pm – 2:15pm 75 min 
Bedtime  7:15 pm 

Total sleep: 13.5 hours 

 

8 month old schedule for high sleep needs baby: 

Time  Length of Nap
Wake Up 7:30am 
1st Nap 9:30am-11:30am  120 min 
2nd Nap 2:00pm-4:00 pm  120 min 
Bedtime  7:30 pm 

Total Sleep: 16 hours

 

 

8 month old schedule for high sleep needs baby with cat nap: 

Time  Length of Nap
Wake Up 7:15am 
1st Nap 9:00am-10:30 am  90 min 
2nd Nap 12:30pm-2:30 pm  120 min 
Cat Nap  4:30pm-5:00pm 30 min 
Bedtime  8:00 pm 

Total Sleep: 15.25 hours

 

 

How can I improve my 8 month old’s sleep schedule?

 

8 month old playing before their 2nd nap of the day | The Peaceful Sleeper

 

We all want what’s best for our children. And one part of that is ensuring that they are getting the sleep they need and deserve. 

 

If you haven’t already, download my FREE Ultimate Naps Guide. It’ll give you all the knowledge you need to help your baby (or toddler) take great naps! Download for free here 💤

 

There are many things you can do to improve your little one’s sleep. The two biggest pieces to having a great sleep schedule is optimizing your baby’s sleep so they are on a schedule where they are getting the right amount of sleep they need for THEIR body, and teaching them independent sleep skills. 

 

When your baby can put themselves to sleep independently, lengthen their naps and connect sleep cycles at night, then you are optimizing their sleep and it is so much easier to play detective when their sleep suddenly gets thrown off (from teething, illness, travel, sleep regressions, etc.) 

 

If you need help teaching independent sleep skills, we would LOVE to help! Check out my 4-24 month course or grab a phone consultation! Every baby can get better sleep! 

 

8 month old sleep schedule recap 

 

Getting great sleep makes everything easier. 

 

Our children need optimal sleep for their physical, mental, emotional and social development. And on top of that, our children need US to be well. 

 

There are a lot of pieces to getting great sleep (all of which we can help with!) and getting your 8 month old on their optimal sleep schedule is one of the pieces. 

 

The key is remembering that every baby is different and what works for one baby likely won’t work for another. And this applies to all aspects of baby sleep, including finding the perfect sleep schedule for your 8 month old. 

 

If you need any support at all with helping your baby get great sleep, please reach out! We would love to meet you and your family, and get everyone’s sleep optimized!

 

PS- Dealing with a regression? Check out this article all about the 8 month old sleep regression!

 

If you haven’t already, download my FREE Ultimate Naps Guide. It’ll give you all the knowledge you need to help your baby (or toddler) take great naps! Download for free here 💤

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